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Penn State Wrestling

Penn State Wrestling Blasts Hofstra, 43-10

Photo by Penn State Athletics

There was one last dual meet before a long holiday break Sunday afternoon for Penn State wrestling. PSU turned in a solid effort against Hofstra, scoring bonus points in every bout they won in a 43-10 victory over the Pride.

PSU had four pins, three technical falls and a major decision, and that was with four more wrestlers making their Rec Hall debut. Penn State had five compete for the first time in Rec Hall last week in the win over Lehigh.

“It was just a good opportunity for these guys to go score points, and do the things they’re working on in practice,” PSU coach Cael Sanderson said. “It was a good day for us. It’s a nice match going into the holiday. It’s something to build on.”


Braeden Davis, David Evans, Connor Pierce and AJ Fricchione were the four guys that made their Rec Hall debuts. The quartet went 2-2 on the day.

Davis got the call at 125 over Gary Steen and Robbie Howard, and made the most of it with an 11-2 major decision victory over Hofstra’s Dylan Acevedo-Switzer. Davis got a takedown in the final 10 seconds to get the major decision.

“Davis is competing hard,” Sanderson said. “He’s a competitor. He’s tough. He looked good today. Going out and getting the takedown to get the major says a lot that he was willing to do that.”

Evans was in for Beau Bartlett at 141 as Bartlett prepares for the Senior Nationals next week in Fort Worth, Tx. Evans was also impressive, scoring six takedowns in a 19-4 technical fall in 6:13.

“We didn’t have all of our starters in there, but we have some great kids in there that are ready to come in and wrestle,” Sanderson said. “Evans is one of them. He’s really scrappy. He has quite a bit of experience, and he’s a competitor. Evans could certainly fill in at 49 and do really well there.”

Pierce fell by major decision at 149, while Fricchione was pinned to end the dual at 285.

“I’d say 49 is definitely to be determined,” said Sanderson. “I was excited for Connor. I don’t think he was happy with the way he competed today, but sometimes wrestling in the arena for the first time can challenge your focus. He’s a great competitor and a great kid. He’ll learn and get better from this experience.


Penn State will have close to a month off until their next dual meet, but they will have wrestlers competing in various tournaments over the break. One of the big ones will come next Sunday in the Senior Nationals, which is a U.S. Team Trials qualifier.

Sanderson confirmed that Bartlett and Greg Kerkvliet will both be wrestling in the tournament, and Penn State will have close to 10 guys represented in the qualifier.


PSU 133-pounder Aaron Nagao was knocked off by Lehigh’s Ryan Crookham last week, but he bounced back in a big way on Sunday with a 21-6 technical fall of Lehigh’s Ryan Arbeit, in 4:20.

“I didn’t honestly change too much,” Nagao said. “I prepared the same. Obviously I did some working on some technical things, but off the mat I’m feeling confident in what I’m doing.”

Frustrating day for Starocci

Yes, Carter Starocci dominated again, as usual. He finished the day with a 19-4 technical fall in 5:38 over Hofstra’s Eric Shindel.

But he was visibly looking for much more on the afternoon, especially a pin. He was called for potentially dangerous several times while trying to turn Shindel. It also didn’t help that Shindel was called for stalling on four separate occasions, giving up four points.

But wrestling in a dual meet is always better than the alternative for Starocci.

“I’m getting out of bed and I’m all smiley on match days,” said Starocci. “These days are a lot better than going in the room and training.”

Penn State 43, Hofstra 10

125 – Braeden Davis (PSU) maj. dec. Dylan Acevedo-Switzer (H), 11-2.

133 – Aaron Nagao (PSU) tech. fall Ryan Arbeit (H), 21-6 4:20.

141 – David Evans (PSU) tech. fall Alex Turley (H), 19-4 6:13.

149 – Noah Tapia (H) maj. dec. Connor Pierce (PSU), 11-2.

157 – Levi Haines (PSU) pinned Dylan Zenion (H), 1:02.

165 – Mitchell Mesenbrink (PSU) pinned Matt Waddell (H), 1:24.

174 – Carter Starocci (PSU) tech. fall Eric Shindel (H), 19-4 5:38.

184 – Bernie Truax (PSU) pinned Will Conlon (H), 1:51.

197 – Aaron Brooks (PSU) pinned Nikolas Miller (H), 4:22.

285 – Keaton Kluever (H) pinned AJ Fricchione (PSU), 4:32.

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